What are you doing to clean your ward? HC’s poser to corporators

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 06 Sep 2018 10:18:36


Staff Reporter,


High Court, for the first time, made all elected representatives accountable for cleaning areas which they represent to ensure that public health gets top most priority

Putting all elected and nominated corporators of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) on notice, the Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court, on Wednesday, sought to know steps taken by each of them to keep their respective area, locality and Prabhag clean and hygienic. Going a step further, the High Court directed all 151 elected corporators and 5 nominated corporators to file their personal affidavits about steps taken by them to keep their respective area free from spread of epidemic.

A division bench consisting of Justice Bhushan Dharmadhikari and Justice Murlidhar Giratkar, while hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Anil Agre regarding lack of upkeep of the city leading to epidemic like swine flu, dengue, scrub typhus, pulled up the civic body for its failure to curb water-logging, clean nullahs and mosquito breeding centres. Normally, the courts ask officials dealing with Health Department or Assistant Municipal Commissioner dealing with each zone to spell out measure taken to control outbreak of epidemic like dengue, but for the first time, all elected representatives have been made accountable for cleaning areas which they represent to ensure that public health gets top most priority.

The High Court did not spare the standing counsels of the statutory bodies and reminded them about their duty as responsible citizens to keep a vigil on cleanliness of neighbourhood.

Even during last year in the connected petition, the High Court had asked the NMC and NIT to “examine feasibility of placing in each ward details like name of the officer entrusted with the responsibility of cleaning dustbins or places where garbage is thrown/accumulated on the lines of Prakash Mitra” so that people can approach them.

Adv Sejal Lakhani appearing for the petitioner pointed out that in March 2015 the High Court had expressed dissatisfaction about functioning of civic body in controlling epidemics like swine flu and scarcity of medicines to tackle it. NMC counsel Sudhir Puranik stated that civic body recently got top ranking in cleanliness survey and listed steps taken to tackle spread of dengue.

The MPCB counsel Adv Ravi Sanyal also complained about slow progress of Bhandewadi waste to energy project and scientific disposal of waste. The High Court asked counsel for the petitioner, NMC and MPCB to jointly visit the dumping yard and examine the ground realities.